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S*409
Session 112 (1997-1998) 

S*0409(Rat #0196, Act #0138 of 1997)  General Bill, By Drummond, Bryan, Ford, 
Hayes, Holland, Hutto, Jackson, Land, Lander, Leventis, Martin, Matthews, 
McGill, Moore, O'Dell, Patterson, Peeler, Rankin, Reese, Saleeby, Short, 
Waldrep and D. Williams
 A BILL TO AMEND SECTION 4-9-55, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING
 TO ENACTMENT OF GENERAL LAWS AFFECTING COUNTIES' EXPENDITURES AND REVENUE
 RAISING, SO AS TO DELETE CERTAIN EXCEPTIONS, AND PROVIDE THAT A PROVISION OF,
 OR AMENDMENT TO, AN APPROPRIATION BILL THAT CONTAINS A PERMANENT OR TEMPORARY
 PROVISION OF LAW MUST BE ADOPTED BY A SEPARATE VOTE OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY,
 BUT ONCE A PROVISION OR AMENDMENT TO AN APPROPRIATION BILL IS ADOPTED, THE
 VOTE TO ADOPT OR REJECT AN APPROPRIATION BILL ON SECOND READING, THIRD
 READING, OR ADOPTION OF THE CONFERENCE COMMITTEE OR FREE CONFERENCE COMMITTEE
 REPORT IS NOT SUBJECT TO THESE PROVISIONS; TO DESIGNATE SECTIONS 4-10-10
 THROUGH 4-10-100 AS ARTICLE 1 OF CHAPTER 10 OF TITLE 4 AND TO ENTITLE THE
 ARTICLE "LOCAL OPTION SALES TAX"; TO AMEND CHAPTER 10, TITLE 4, RELATING TO
 LOCAL SALES AND USE TAX, BY ADDING ARTICLE 3 SO AS TO ENACT THE "CAPITAL
 PROJECT SALES TAX ACT"; TO DESIGNATE SECTIONS 6-1-10 THROUGH 6-1-110 AS
 ARTICLE 1 OF CHAPTER 1 OF TITLE 6 AND TO ENTITLE THE ARTICLE "GENERAL
 PROVISIONS; TO AMEND SECTION 6-1-70, RELATING TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PROVISIONS
 APPLICABLE TO SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICTS AND OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS, AND
 REAL ESTATE TRANSFER FEES, SO AS TO DELETE CERTAIN PROVISIONS, PROVIDE THAT
 THE GOVERNING BODY OF EACH COUNTY, MUNICIPALITY, SCHOOL DISTRICT OR SPECIAL
 PURPOSE DISTRICT MAY NOT IMPOSE ANY FEE OR TAX OF ANY NATURE OR DESCRIPTION ON
 THE TRANSFER OF REAL PROPERTY UNLESS THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY HAS EXPRESSLY
 AUTHORIZED BY GENERAL LAW THE IMPOSITION OF THE FEE OR TAX, AND PROVIDE THAT A
 MUNICIPALITY THAT ORIGINALLY ENACTED A REAL ESTATE TRANSFER FEE PRIOR TO
 JANUARY 1, 1991, MAY IMPOSE AND COLLECT A REAL ESTATE TRANSFER FEE BY
 ORDINANCE REGARDLESS OF WHETHER IMPOSITION OF THE FEE WAS DISCONTINUED FOR A
 PERIOD AFTER JANUARY 1, 1991; TO PROVIDE THAT LOCAL GOVERNING BODIES THAT
 ENACTED AND COLLECTED FEES ON TRANSFERS OF REAL ESTATE ARE ALLOWED TO USE
 THOSE FUNDS FOR THEIR ORIGINALLY INTENDED SPECIFIC LOCAL PURPOSES AND ARE NOT
 REQUIRED TO REMIT ANY OF THESE REVENUES TO THE STATE, AND REQUIRE THE STATE
 TREASURER TO RETURN ANY REAL ESTATE TRANSFER FEES WHICH HAVE BEEN REMITTED TO
 THE TREASURER'S OFFICE TO THE LOCAL GOVERNING BODY WHICH REMITTED THOSE FUNDS
 SO THAT THE FUNDS MAY BE USED FOR THEIR ORIGINALLY INTENDED SPECIFIC LOCAL
 PURPOSES; TO AMEND THE 1976 CODE BY ADDING SECTION 6-1-85 SO AS TO PROVIDE,
 AMONG OTHER THINGS, THAT THE STATE BUDGET AND CONTROL BOARD, DIVISION OF
 BUDGET AND ANALYSES SHALL MONITOR AND REVIEW THE TAX BURDEN BORNE BY THE
 CLASSES OF PROPERTY LISTED IN ARTICLE X, SECTION 1 OF THE STATE CONSTITUTION
 AND SHALL DEVELOP A METHODOLOGY TO DETERMINE AND ESTIMATE TAX INCIDENCE, AND
 PROVIDE THAT A TAX INCIDENCE STATEMENT, PREPARED BY THE DIVISION OF BUDGET
 ANALYSES, MUST BE ATTACHED TO ANY LEGISLATIVE BILL OR RESOLUTION THAT HAS THE
 POTENTIAL TO CAUSE A SHIFT IN TAX INCIDENCE; TO AMEND CHAPTER 1, TITLE 6,
 RELATING TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND PROVISIONS OF LAW APPLICABLE TO SPECIAL
 PURPOSE DISTRICTS AND OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS, BY ADDING ARTICLE 3 SO AS
 TO PROVIDE WITH RESPECT TO THE AUTHORITY OF LOCAL GOVERNMENTS TO ASSESS TAXES
 AND FEES, INCLUDING THE PROVISION, AMONG OTHERS, THAT A LOCAL GOVERNMENTAL
 BODY MAY NOT IMPOSE A NEW TAX AFTER DECEMBER 31, 1996, UNLESS SPECIFICALLY
 AUTHORIZED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY; TO AMEND CHAPTER 1, TITLE 6, RELATING TO
 LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND PROVISIONS OF LAW APPLICABLE TO SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICTS
 AND OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS, BY ADDING ARTICLE 5 SO AS TO ENACT THE
 "LOCAL ACCOMMODATIONS TAX ACT"; TO AMEND CHAPTER 6, TITLE 1, RELATING TO LOCAL
 GOVERNMENT AND PROVISIONS OF LAW APPLICABLE TO SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICTS AND
 OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS, BY ADDING ARTICLE 7 SO AS TO ENACT THE "LOCAL
 HOSPITALITY TAX ACT"; AND TO PROVIDE THAT ANY ORDINANCE ENACTED BY A COUNTY OR
 MUNICIPALITY BEFORE MARCH 15, 1997, IMPOSING AN ACCOMMODATIONS FEE WHICH DOES
 NOT EXCEED THE THREE PERCENT MAXIMUM CUMULATIVE RATE PRESCRIBED IN SECTION
 6-1-540, IS CALCULATED UPON A BASE CONSISTENT WITH SECTION 6-1-510(1), AND THE
 REVENUE FROM WHICH IS USED FOR THE PURPOSES ENUMERATED IN SECTION 6-1-530,
 REMAINS AUTHORIZED AND EFFECTIVE AFTER THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS ACT AND THE
 ENACTING COUNTY OR MUNICIPALITY IS AUTHORIZED TO ISSUED BONDS UTILIZING THE
 PROCEDURES OF SECTION 4-29-68 FOR THE PURPOSES ENUMERATED IN SECTION 6-1-530
 AND TO RETIRE THAT DEBT USING THE PROCEEDS OF SUCH AN ACCOMMODATIONS FEE
 ORDINANCE AND THE PLEDGE OF OTHER NONTAX REVENUES AS MAY BE AVAILABLE FOR
 THOSE PURPOSES.-AMENDED TITLE

   02/25/97  Senate Introduced and read first time SJ-8
   02/25/97  Senate Referred to Committee on Finance SJ-8
   03/12/97  Senate Committee report: Favorable with amendment
                     Finance SJ-21
   04/01/97  Senate Special order SJ-27
   04/02/97  Senate Debate interrupted SJ-25
   04/30/97  Senate Read second time SJ-64
   04/30/97  Senate Ordered to third reading with notice of
                     amendments SJ-64
   05/15/97  Senate Amended SJ-52
   05/15/97  Senate Read third time and sent to House SJ-52
   05/20/97  House  Introduced and read first time HJ-8
   05/20/97  House  Referred to Committee on Judiciary HJ-9
   05/27/97  House  Committee report: Favorable with amendment
                     Judiciary HJ-5
   05/29/97  House  Point of order- fiscal impact statement needed HJ-18
   05/29/97  House  Requests for debate-Rep(s). Baxley, D. Smith,
                     Harrison, Limbaugh, Simrill, Edge, Young,
                     Allison, Kennedy, Whipper, Altman, Woodrum &
                     Neal HJ-84
   05/29/97  House  Debate interrupted HJ-107
   06/03/97  House  Amended HJ-137
   06/03/97  House  Read second time HJ-144
   06/03/97  House  Roll call Yeas-94  Nays-18 HJ-144
   06/04/97  House  Read third time and returned to Senate with
                     amendments HJ-47
   06/04/97  Senate Concurred in House amendment and enrolled SJ-17
   06/09/97         Ratified R 196
   06/13/97         Signed By Governor
   06/13/97         Effective date 07/01/97, except as otherwise provided
   07/09/97         Copies available
   07/09/97         Act No. 138



(A138, R196, S409)

AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 4-9-55, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO ENACTMENT OF GENERAL LAWS AFFECTING COUNTIES' EXPENDITURES AND REVENUE RAISING, SO AS TO DELETE CERTAIN EXCEPTIONS, AND PROVIDE THAT A PROVISION OF, OR AMENDMENT TO, AN APPROPRIATION BILL THAT CONTAINS A PERMANENT OR TEMPORARY PROVISION OF LAW MUST BE ADOPTED BY A SEPARATE VOTE OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY, BUT THAT ONCE A PROVISION OR AMENDMENT TO AN APPROPRIATION BILL IS ADOPTED, THE VOTE TO ADOPT OR REJECT AN APPROPRIATION BILL ON SECOND READING, THIRD READING, OR ADOPTION OF THE CONFERENCE COMMITTEE OR FREE CONFERENCE COMMITTEE REPORT IS NOT SUBJECT TO THESE PROVISIONS; TO DESIGNATE SECTIONS 4-10-10 THROUGH 4-10-100 AS ARTICLE 1 OF CHAPTER 10 OF TITLE 4 AND TO ENTITLE THE ARTICLE "LOCAL OPTION SALES TAX"; TO AMEND CHAPTER 10, TITLE 4, RELATING TO LOCAL SALES AND USE TAX, BY ADDING ARTICLE 3 SO AS TO ENACT THE "CAPITAL PROJECT SALES TAX ACT"; TO DESIGNATE SECTIONS 6-1-10 THROUGH 6-1-110 AS ARTICLE 1 OF CHAPTER 1 OF TITLE 6 AND TO ENTITLE THE ARTICLE "GENERAL PROVISIONS"; TO AMEND SECTION 6-1-70, RELATING TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT, PROVISIONS APPLICABLE TO SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICTS AND OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS, AND REAL ESTATE TRANSFER FEES, SO AS TO DELETE CERTAIN PROVISIONS, PROVIDE THAT THE GOVERNING BODY OF EACH COUNTY, MUNICIPALITY, SCHOOL DISTRICT, OR SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICT MAY NOT IMPOSE ANY FEE OR TAX OF ANY NATURE OR DESCRIPTION ON THE TRANSFER OF REAL PROPERTY UNLESS THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY HAS EXPRESSLY AUTHORIZED BY GENERAL LAW THE IMPOSITION OF THE FEE OR TAX, AND PROVIDE THAT A MUNICIPALITY THAT ORIGINALLY ENACTED A REAL ESTATE TRANSFER FEE PRIOR TO JANUARY 1, 1991, MAY IMPOSE AND COLLECT A REAL ESTATE TRANSFER FEE BY ORDINANCE REGARDLESS OF WHETHER IMPOSITION OF THE FEE WAS DISCONTINUED FOR A PERIOD AFTER JANUARY 1, 1991; TO PROVIDE THAT LOCAL GOVERNING BODIES THAT ENACTED AND COLLECTED FEES ON TRANSFERS OF REAL ESTATE ARE ALLOWED TO USE THOSE FUNDS FOR THEIR ORIGINALLY INTENDED SPECIFIC LOCAL PURPOSES AND ARE NOT REQUIRED TO REMIT ANY OF THESE REVENUES TO THE STATE, AND REQUIRE THE STATE TREASURER TO RETURN ANY REAL ESTATE TRANSFER FEES WHICH HAVE BEEN REMITTED TO THE TREASURER'S OFFICE TO THE LOCAL GOVERNING BODY WHICH REMITTED THOSE FUNDS SO THAT THE FUNDS MAY BE USED FOR THEIR ORIGINALLY INTENDED SPECIFIC LOCAL PURPOSES; TO AMEND THE 1976 CODE BY ADDING SECTION 6-1-85 SO AS TO PROVIDE, AMONG OTHER THINGS, THAT THE STATE BUDGET AND CONTROL BOARD, DIVISION OF BUDGET AND ANALYSES, SHALL MONITOR AND REVIEW THE TAX BURDEN BORNE BY THE CLASSES OF PROPERTY LISTED IN ARTICLE X, SECTION 1 OF THE STATE CONSTITUTION AND SHALL DEVELOP A METHODOLOGY TO DETERMINE AND ESTIMATE TAX INCIDENCE, AND PROVIDE THAT A TAX INCIDENCE STATEMENT, PREPARED BY THE DIVISION OF BUDGET ANALYSES, MUST BE ATTACHED TO ANY LEGISLATIVE BILL OR RESOLUTION THAT HAS THE POTENTIAL TO CAUSE A SHIFT IN TAX INCIDENCE; TO AMEND CHAPTER 1, TITLE 6, RELATING TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND PROVISIONS OF LAW APPLICABLE TO SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICTS AND OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS, BY ADDING ARTICLE 3 SO AS TO PROVIDE WITH RESPECT TO THE AUTHORITY OF LOCAL GOVERNMENTS TO ASSESS TAXES AND FEES, INCLUDING THE PROVISION, AMONG OTHERS, THAT A LOCAL GOVERNMENTAL BODY MAY NOT IMPOSE A NEW TAX AFTER DECEMBER 31, 1996, UNLESS SPECIFICALLY AUTHORIZED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY; TO AMEND CHAPTER 1, TITLE 6, RELATING TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND PROVISIONS OF LAW APPLICABLE TO SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICTS AND OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS, BY ADDING ARTICLE 5 SO AS TO ENACT THE "LOCAL ACCOMMODATIONS TAX ACT"; TO AMEND CHAPTER 6, TITLE 1, RELATING TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND PROVISIONS OF LAW APPLICABLE TO SPECIAL PURPOSE DISTRICTS AND OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISIONS, BY ADDING ARTICLE 7 SO AS TO ENACT THE "LOCAL HOSPITALITY TAX ACT"; AND TO PROVIDE THAT ANY ORDINANCE ENACTED BY A COUNTY OR MUNICIPALITY BEFORE MARCH 15, 1997, IMPOSING AN ACCOMMODATIONS FEE WHICH DOES NOT EXCEED THE THREE PERCENT MAXIMUM CUMULATIVE RATE PRESCRIBED IN SECTION 6-1-540, IS CALCULATED UPON A BASE CONSISTENT WITH SECTION 6-1-510(1), AND THE REVENUE FROM WHICH IS USED FOR THE PURPOSES ENUMERATED IN SECTION 6-1-530, REMAINS AUTHORIZED AND EFFECTIVE AFTER THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS ACT AND THE ENACTING COUNTY OR MUNICIPALITY IS AUTHORIZED TO ISSUE BONDS UTILIZING THE PROCEDURES OF SECTION 4-29-68 FOR THE PURPOSES ENUMERATED IN SECTION 6-1-530 AND TO RETIRE THAT DEBT USING THE PROCEEDS OF SUCH AN ACCOMMODATIONS FEE ORDINANCE AND THE PLEDGE OF OTHER NONTAX REVENUES AS MAY BE AVAILABLE FOR THOSE PURPOSES.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:

Exceptions deleted; separate vote of General Assembly; etc.

SECTION 1. Section 4-9-55 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:

"Section 4-9-55. (A) A county may not be bound by any general law requiring it to spend funds or to take an action requiring the expenditure of funds unless the General Assembly has determined that the law fulfills a state interest and the law requiring the expenditure is approved by two-thirds of the members voting in each house of the General Assembly provided a simple majority of the members voting in each house is required if one of the following applies:

(1) funds have been appropriated that have been estimated by the Division of Budget and Analyses at the time of enactment to be sufficient to fund the expenditures;

(2) the General Assembly authorizes or has authorized a county to enact a funding source not available for the county on July 1, 1993, that can be used to generate the amount of funds estimated to be sufficient to fund the expenditure by a simple majority vote of the governing body of the county;

(3) the expenditure is required to comply with a law that applies to all persons similarly situated, including the state and local governments;

(4) the law is either required to comply with a federal requirement or required for eligibility for a federal entitlement.

(B) Except upon approval of each house of the General Assembly by two-thirds of the members voting in each house, the General Assembly may not enact, amend, or repeal any general law if the anticipated effect of doing so would be to reduce the authority that counties have to raise revenues in the aggregate, as the authority exists on July 1, 1993.

(C) The provisions of this section do not apply to:

(1) laws enacted to require funding of pension benefits existing on the effective date of this section;

(2) laws relating to the judicial department;

(3) criminal laws;

(4) election laws;

(5) the Department of Education;

(6) laws reauthorizing but not expanding then-existing statutory authority;

(7) laws having a fiscal impact of less than ten cents per capita on a statewide basis; laws creating, modifying, or repealing noncriminal infractions.

(D) The duties, requirements, and obligations imposed by general laws in effect on July 1, 1993, are not suspended by the provisions of this section.

(E) A provision of, or amendment to, an appropriation bill that contains a permanent or temporary provision of law must be adopted by a separate vote of the General Assembly in the manner provided in subsections (A) through (D) of this section. Provided, however, that once a provision or amendment to an appropriation bill is adopted, the vote to adopt or reject an appropriation bill on second reading, third reading, or adoption of the conference committee or free conference committee report is not subject to the provisions of subsections (A) through (D) of this section."

Article created, entitled

SECTION 2. Sections 4-10-10 through 4-10-100 of the 1976 Code are hereby designated as Article 1, entitled "Local Option Sales Tax".

"Capital Project Sales Tax Act" enacted

SECTION 3. Chapter 10, Title 4 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:

"Article 3

Capital Project Sales Tax Act

Section 4-10-300. Short title.

This article may be cited as the 'Capital Project Sales Tax Act'.

Section 4-10-310. Imposition of tax.

Subject to the requirements of this article, the county governing body may impose a one percent sales and use tax by ordinance, subject to a referendum, within the county area for a specific purpose or purposes and for a limited amount of time to collect a limited amount of money. The revenues collected pursuant to this article may be used to defray debt service on bonds issued to pay for projects authorized in this article. However, at no time may any portion of the county area be subject to more than one percent sales tax levied pursuant to this article, pursuant to Chapter 37 of Title 4, or pursuant to any local law enacted by the General Assembly.

Section 4-10-320. Commission creation; composition.

(A) The governing body of any county is authorized to create a commission subject to the provisions of this section. The commission consists of six members, all of whom must be residents of the county, appointed as follows:

(1) The governing body of the county must appoint three members of the commission.

(2) The municipalities in the county must appoint three members, who must be residents of incorporated municipalities within the county, and who are selected according to the following mechanism:

(a) The total population of all incorporated municipalities within the county, as determined by the most recent United States census, must be divided by three, the result being an apportionate average.

(b) The respective population of each municipality in the county must be divided by the apportionate average to determine an appointive index.

(c) Each municipality in the county appoints a number of members to the commission equal to the whole number indicated by their appointive index. However, no single municipality may appoint more than two members to the commission; unless there is only one municipality in the county, and in such case the municipality is entitled to three appointments to the commission.

(d) When less than three members are selected to the commission in accordance with the prescribed appointive index method, the remaining member or members must be selected in a joint meeting of the commission appointees of the municipalities in the county. The member or members must be chosen from among the residents of the municipalities in the county that before this time have not provided a representative for the commission.

(e) In the event no municipality is entitled to appoint a member to the commission pursuant to the formula in subitem (c) of this subsection, the municipality with the highest appointive index must be deemed to have an appointive index of one.

(B) When the governing body of any county creates a commission, it must be created in accordance with the procedures specified in subsection (A) and only upon the request of the governing body of the county. If within the thirty-day period following the adoption of a resolution to create the commission, one or more of the municipalities fails or refuses to appoint their proportionate number of members to the commission, the county governing body must appoint an additional number of members equal to the number that any such municipality is entitled to appoint. A vacancy on the commission must be filled in the manner of the original appointment.

(C) The commission created pursuant to this section must consider proposals for funding capital projects within the county area. The commission then formulates the referendum question that is to appear on the ballot pursuant to Section 4-10-330(D).

Section 4-10-330. Contents of ballot question; purpose for which proceeds of tax to be used.

(A) The sales and use tax authorized by this article is imposed by an enacting ordinance of the county governing body containing the ballot question formulated by the commission pursuant to subsection 4-10-320(C), subject to referendum approval in the county. The ordinance must specify:

(1) the purpose for which the proceeds of the tax are to be used, which may include projects located within or without, or both within and without, the boundaries of the local governmental entities, including the county, municipalities, and special purpose districts located in the county area, and may include the following types of projects:

(a) highways, roads, streets, and bridges;

(b) courthouses, administration buildings, civic centers, hospitals, emergency medical facilities, police stations, fire stations, jails, correctional facilities, detention facilities, libraries, coliseums, or any combination of these projects;

(c) cultural, recreational, or historic facilities, or any combination of these facilities;

(d) water, sewer, or water and sewer projects;

(e) flood control projects and storm water management facilities;

(f) jointly operated projects of the county, a municipality, special purpose district, and school district, or any combination of those entities, for the projects delineated in subitems (a) through (e) of this subsection;

(g) any combination of the projects described in subitems (a) through (f) of this item;

(2) the maximum time, stated in terms of calendar or fiscal years or quarters, or a combination thereof, not to exceed seven years from the date of imposition, for which the tax may be imposed;

(3) the maximum cost of the project or facilities funded from proceeds of the tax and the maximum amount of net proceeds to be raised by the tax; and

(4) any other condition precedent, as determined by the commission, to the imposition of the sales and use tax authorized by this article or condition or restriction on the use of sales and use tax revenue collected pursuant to this article.

(B) When the tax authorized by this article is imposed for more than one purpose, the enacting ordinance must set forth the priority in which the net proceeds are to be expended for the purposes stated. The enacting ordinance may set forth a formula or system by which multiple projects are funded simultaneously.

(C) Upon receipt of the ordinance, the county election commission must conduct a referendum on the question of imposing the sales and use tax in the area of the county that is to be subject to the tax. If the ordinance is received prior to October 1, 1997, a referendum for this purpose may be held on Tuesday, November 4, 1997; however, if the ordinance is received on October 1, 1997, or thereafter, a referendum for this purpose must be held at the time of the general election. Two weeks before the referendum the election commission must publish in a newspaper of general circulation the question that is to appear on the ballot, with the list of projects and the cost of the projects. This notice is in lieu of any other notice otherwise required by law.

(D) The referendum question to be on the ballot must read substantially as follows:

'Must a special one percent sales and use tax be imposed in (county) for not more than (time) to raise the amounts specified for the following purposes?

(1) $______ for _________

(2) $______ for _________

(3) etc.

Yes []

No []'

(E) All qualified electors desiring to vote in favor of imposing the tax for the stated purposes shall vote 'yes' and all qualified electors opposed to levying the tax shall vote 'no'. If a majority of the votes cast are in favor of imposing the tax, then the tax is imposed as provided in this article and the enacting ordinance. A subsequent referendum on this question must be held on the date prescribed in subsection (C). The election commission shall conduct the referendum under the election laws of this State, mutatis mutandis, and shall certify the result no later than December thirty-first to the county governing body and to the Department of Revenue. Expenses of the referendum must be paid by the governmental entities that would receive the proceeds of the tax in the same proportion that those entities would receive the net proceeds of the tax.

(F) Upon receipt of the returns of the referendum, the county governing body must, by resolution, declare the results thereof. In such event, the results of the referendum, as declared by resolution of the county governing body, are not open to question except by a suit or proceeding instituted within thirty days from the date such resolution is adopted.

Section 4-10-340. Tax imposition and termination.

(A) If the sales and use tax is approved in the referendum, the tax is imposed on the first of May following the date of the referendum. If the certification is not timely made to the Department of Revenue, the imposition is postponed for twelve months.

(B) The tax terminates on the earlier of:

(1) the final day of the maximum time period specified for the imposition; or

(2) the end of the calendar month during which the Department of Revenue determines that the tax has raised revenues sufficient to provide the net proceeds equal to or greater than the amount specified in the referendum question.

(C) Amounts collected in excess of the required net proceeds must first be applied, if necessary, to complete a project for which the tax was imposed; otherwise, the excess funds must be credited to the general fund of the governmental entities receiving the proceeds of the tax, in the proportion which they received the net proceeds of the tax while it was imposed.

Section 4-10-350. Department of Revenue to administer and collect local tax.

(A) The tax levied pursuant to this article must be administered and collected by the Department of Revenue in the same manner that other sales and use taxes are collected. The department may prescribe amounts that may be added to the sales price because of the tax.

(B) The tax authorized by this article is in addition to all other local sales and use taxes and applies to the gross proceeds of sales in the applicable area that is subject to the tax imposed by Chapter 36 of Title 12 and the enforcement provisions of Chapter 54 of Title 12. The gross proceeds of the sale of items subject to a maximum tax in Chapter 36 of Title 12 are exempt from the tax imposed by this article. The tax imposed by this article also applies to tangible personal property subject to the use tax in Article 13, Chapter 36 of Title 12.

(C) Taxpayers required to remit taxes under Article 13, Chapter 36 of Title 12 must identify the county, municipality, or both, in which the personal property purchased at retail is stored, used, or consumed in this State.

(D) Utilities are required to report sales in the county, municipality, or both, in which the consumption of the tangible personal property occurs.

(E) A taxpayer subject to the tax imposed by Section 12-36-920, who owns or manages rental units in more than one county, municipality, or combination thereof, must report separately in his sales tax return the total gross proceeds from business done in each county or municipality.

(F) The gross proceeds of sales of tangible personal property delivered after the imposition date of the tax levied under this article in a county, either under the terms of a construction contract executed before the imposition date, or a written bid submitted before the imposition date, culminating in a construction contract entered into before or after the imposition date, are exempt from the sales and use tax provided in this article if a verified copy of the contract is filed with the Department of Revenue within six months after the imposition date of the sales and use tax provided for in this article.

(G) Notwithstanding the imposition date of the sales and use tax authorized pursuant to this chapter, with respect to services that are billed regularly on a monthly basis, the sales and use tax authorized pursuant to this article is imposed beginning on the first day of the billing period beginning on or after the imposition date.

Section 4-10-360. Revenue remitted to State Treasurer and held in a separate fund.

The revenues of the tax collected under this article must be remitted to the Department of Revenue and placed on deposit with the State Treasurer and credited to a fund separate and distinct from the general fund of the State. After deducting the amount of any refunds made and costs to the Department of Revenue of administering the tax, not to exceed one percent of the revenues, the State Treasurer shall distribute the revenues quarterly to the county treasurer in the county area in which the tax is imposed and the revenues must be used only for the purposes stated in the imposition ordinance. The State Treasurer may correct misallocations by adjusting subsequent distributions, but these adjustments must be made in the same fiscal year as the misallocations.

Section 4-10-370. Calculating distributions to counties; confidentiality.

The Department of Revenue shall furnish data to the State Treasurer and to the county treasurers receiving revenues for the purpose of calculating distributions and estimating revenues. The information that must be supplied to counties and municipalities upon request includes, but is not limited to, gross receipts, net taxable sales, and tax liability by taxpayers. Information about a specific taxpayer is considered confidential and is governed by the provisions of Section 12-54-240. A person violating this section is subject to the penalties provided in Section 12-54-240."

Article created, entitled

SECTION 4. Sections 6-1-10 through 6-1-110 of the 1976 Code are hereby designated as Article 1, entitled "General Provisions".

No local fee or tax on real estate transfers; exception; etc.

SECTION 5. A. Section 6-1-70 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:

"Section 6-1-70. (A) The governing body of each county, municipality, school district, or special purpose district may not impose any fee or tax of any nature or description on the transfer of real property unless the General Assembly has expressly authorized by general law the imposition of the fee or tax.

(B) A municipality that originally enacted a real estate transfer fee prior to January 1, 1991, may impose and collect a real estate transfer fee, by ordinance, regardless of whether imposition of the fee was discontinued for a period after January 1, 1991."

B. The local governing bodies that enacted and collected fees on transfers of real estate are allowed to use those funds for their originally intended specific local purposes and are not required to remit any of those revenues to the State. The State Treasurer is directed to return any real estate transfer fees which have been remitted to his office to the local governing body which remitted those funds so the funds may be used for their originally intended specific local purposes.

Monitor, review of tax burden borne by certain classes of property; etc.

SECTION 6. Chapter 1, Title 6 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:

"Section 6-1-85. (A) The Budget and Control Board, Division of Budget and Analyses, shall monitor and review the tax burden borne by the classes of property listed in Article X, Section 1 of the State Constitution. To determine the tax burden of each class of property, the Division of Budget and Analyses may use a ratio that compares total property taxes paid by the property class divided by the total fair market value of the property class. The Department of Revenue shall provide to the Division of Budget and Analyses the information on assessed values and fair market values of properties as collected in accordance with Section 59-20-20(3).

(B) The Budget and Control Board, Division of Budget and Analyses, shall develop a methodology to determine and estimate tax incidence. A tax incidence statement, prepared by the Division of Budget and Analyses, must be attached to any bill or resolution that has the potential to cause a shift in tax incidence. The tax incidence refers to the ultimate payer of a tax.

(C) The Budget and Control Board, Division of Budget and Analyses, may consult with outside experts with respect to fulfilling the requirements of subsections (A) and (B) of this section.

(D) Reports of the Budget and Control Board, Division of Budget and Analyses required under this section must be published and reported to the Governor, the members of the Budget and Control Board, the members of the General Assembly and made available to the public."

Local governments' authority to assess taxes, fees

SECTION 7. Chapter 1, Title 6 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:

"Article 3

Authority of Local Governments to Assess Taxes and Fees

Section 6-1-300. Definitions.

As used in the article:

(1) 'Consumer price index' means the consumer price index for all-urban consumers published by the U.S. Department of Labor. In the event of a revision of the consumer price index, the index that is most consistent with the consumer price index for all-urban consumers as calculated in 1996 must be used.

(2) 'Intergovernmental transfer of funding responsibility' means an act, resolution, court order, administrative order, or other action by a higher level of government that requires a lower level of government to use its own funds, personnel, facilities, or equipment.

(3) 'Local governing body' means the governing body of a county, municipality, or special purpose district. As used in Section 6-1-320 only, local governing body also refers to the body authorized by law to levy school taxes.

(4) 'New tax' is a tax that the local governing body had not enacted as of December 31, 1996.

(5) 'Positive majority' means a vote for adoption by the majority of the members of the entire governing body, whether present or not. However, if there is a vacancy in the membership of the governing body, a positive majority vote of the entire governing body as constituted on the date of the final vote on the imposition is required.

(6) 'Service or user fee' means a charge required to be paid in return for a particular government service or program made available to the payer that benefits the payer in some manner different from the members of the general public not paying the fee. 'Service or user fee' also includes 'uniform service charges'.

(7) 'Specifically authorized by the General Assembly' means an express grant of power:

(a) in a prior act;

(b) by this act; or

(c) in a future act.

Section 6-1-310. Prohibition on imposition of new local taxes.

A local governing body may not impose a new tax after December 31, 1996, unless specifically authorized by the General Assembly.

Section 6-1-315. Limitation on imposition or increase of business license tax.

By ordinance adopted by a positive majority vote, a local governing body may impose a business license tax or increase the rate of a business license tax, authorized by Sections 4-9-30(12) and 5-7-30.

Section 6-1-320. Millage rate increase limitation; exceptions.

(A) Notwithstanding Section 12-37-251(E), a local governing body may only increase the millage rate imposed for general operating purposes above the rate imposed for such purposes for the prior tax year to the extent of the increase in the consumer price index for the preceding fiscal year. However, in the year in which a reassessment program is implemented, the rollback millage, as calculated pursuant to Section 12-37-251(E), must be used in lieu of the previous year's millage rate.

(B) Notwithstanding the limitation upon millage rate increases contained in subsection (A), the millage rate limitation may be suspended and the millage rate may be increased for the following purposes:

(1) in response to a natural, environmental, or other disaster as declared by the Governor;

(2) to offset a prior year's deficit, as required by Section 7, Article X of the South Carolina Constitution;

(3) to raise the revenue necessary to comply with judicial mandates requiring the use of county or municipal funds, personnel, facilities, or equipment;

(4) to meet the minimum required local Education Finance Act inflation factor as projected by the State Budget and Control Board, Division of Research and Statistics, and the per pupil maintenance of effort requirement of Section 59-21-1030, if applicable.

(C) The millage rate limitation provided for in subsection (A) of this section may be overridden and the millage rate may be further increased by a positive majority vote of the appropriate governing body. The vote must be taken at a specially-called meeting held solely for the purpose of taking a vote to increase the millage rate. The governing body must provide public notice of the meeting notifying the public that the governing body is meeting to vote to override the limitation and increase the millage rate. Public comment must be received by the governing body prior to the override vote.

(D) The restriction contained in this section does not affect millage that is levied to pay bonded indebtedness or payments for real property purchased using a lease-purchase agreement or used to maintain a reserve account. Nothing in this section prohibits the use of energy-saving performance contracts as provided in Section 48-52-670.

(E) Notwithstanding any provision contained herein, this article does not and may not be construed to amend or to repeal the rights of a legislative delegation to set or restrict school district millage, and this article does not and may not be construed to amend or to repeal any caps on school millage provided by current law or statute or limitation on the fiscal autonomy of a school district as currently in existing law.

(F) The positive majority vote of the governing body required by this section does not apply to school districts that have their budgets approved by qualified electors at a town meeting.

Section 6-1-330. Local fee imposition limitations.

(A) A local governing body, by ordinance approved by a positive majority, is authorized to charge and collect a service or user fee. A local governing body must provide public notice of any new service or user fee being considered and the governing body is required to hold a public hearing on any proposed new service or user fee prior to final adoption of any new service or user fee. Public comment must be received by the governing body prior to the final reading of the ordinance to adopt a new service or user fee. A fee adopted or imposed by a local governing body prior to December 31, 1996, remains in force and effect until repealed by the enacting local governing body, notwithstanding the provisions of this section.

(B) The revenue derived from a service or user fee imposed to finance the provision of public services must be used to pay costs related to the provision of the service or program for which the fee was paid. If the revenue generated by a fee is five percent or more of the imposing entity's prior fiscal year's total budget, the proceeds of the fee must be kept in a separate and segregated fund from the general fund of the imposing governmental entity.

(C) If a governmental entity proposes to adopt a service or user fee to fund a service that was previously funded by property tax revenue, the notice required pursuant to Section 6-1-80 must include that fact in the text of the published notice."

"Local Accommodations Tax Act" enacted

SECTION 8. Title 6, Chapter 1 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:

"Article 5

Local Accommodations Tax

Section 6-1-500. Short title.

This article may be cited as the 'Local Accommodations Tax Act'.

Section 6-1-510. Definitions.

As used in this article:

(1) 'Local accommodations tax' means a tax on the gross proceeds derived from the rental or charges for accommodations furnished to transients as provided in Section 12-36-920(A) and which is imposed on every person engaged or continuing within the jurisdiction of the imposing local governmental body in the business of furnishing accommodations to transients for consideration.

(2) 'Local governing body' means the governing body of a county or municipality.

(3) 'Positive majority' means a vote for adoption by the majority of the members of the entire governing body, whether present or not. However, if there is a vacancy in the membership of the governing body, a positive majority vote of the entire governing body as constituted on the date of the final vote on the imposition is required.

Section 6-1-520. Imposition of local accommodations tax.

(A) A local governing body may impose, by ordinance, a local accommodations tax, not to exceed three percent. However, an ordinance imposing the local accommodations tax must be adopted by a positive majority vote. The governing body of a county may not impose a local accommodations tax in excess of one and one-half percent within the boundaries of a municipality without the consent, by resolution, of the appropriate municipal governing body.

(B) All proceeds from a local accommodations tax must be kept in a separate fund segregated from the imposing entity's general fund. All interest generated by the local accommodations tax fund must be credited to the local accommodations tax fund.

Section 6-1-530. Use of revenue from local accommodations tax.

(A) The revenue generated by the local accommodations tax must be used exclusively for the following purposes:

(1) tourism-related buildings, including, but not limited to, civic centers, coliseums, and aquariums;

(2) cultural, recreational, or historic facilities;

(3) beach access and renourishment;

(4) highways, roads, streets, and bridges providing access to tourist destinations;

(5) advertisements and promotions related to tourism development; or

(6) water and sewer infrastructure to serve tourism-related demand.

(B) In a county in which at least nine hundred thousand dollars in accommodations taxes is collected annually pursuant to Section 12-36-920, the revenues of the local accommodations tax authorized in this article may also be used for the operation and maintenance of those items provided in (A)(1) through (6) including police, fire protection, emergency medical services, and emergency-preparedness operations directly attendant to those facilities.

Section 6-1-540. Cumulative rate of local accommodations tax. The cumulative rate of county and municipal local accommodations taxes for any portion of the county area may not exceed three percent, unless the cumulative total of such taxes were in excess of three percent prior to December 31, 1996, in which case the cumulative rate may not exceed the rate that was imposed as of December 31, 1996.

Section 6-1-550. Local accommodations tax revenue upon annexation.

In an area of the county where the county has imposed a local accommodations tax that is annexed by a municipality, the municipality must receive only that portion of the revenue generated in excess of the county local accommodations tax revenue for the previous twelve months in the area annexed.

Section 6-1-560. Real estate agents required to report when rental property listing dropped.

Real estate agents, brokers, corporations, or listing services required to remit taxes under this section must notify the appropriate local governmental entity or entities if rental property, previously listed by them, is dropped from their listings."

"Local Hospitality Tax Act" enacted

SECTION 9. Chapter 1, Title 6 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:

"Article 7

Local Hospitality Tax

Section 6-1-700. Short title.

This article may be cited as the 'Local Hospitality Tax Act'.

Section 6-1-710. Definitions.

As used in the article:

(1) 'Local governing body' means the governing body of a county or municipality.

(2) 'Local hospitality tax' is a tax on the sales of prepared meals and beverages sold in establishments or sales of prepared meals and beverages sold in establishments licensed for on-premises consumption of alcoholic beverages, beer, or wine.

(3) 'Positive majority' means a vote for adoption by the majority of the members of the entire governing body, whether present or not. However, if there is a vacancy in the membership of the governing body, a positive majority vote of the entire governing body as constituted on the date of the final vote on the imposition is required.

Section 6-1-720. Imposition of local hospitality tax.

(A) A local governing body may impose, by ordinance, a local hospitality tax not to exceed two percent of the charges for food and beverages. However, an ordinance imposing the local hospitality tax must be adopted by a positive majority vote. The governing body of a county may not impose a local hospitality tax in excess of one percent within the boundaries of a municipality without the consent, by resolution, of the appropriate municipal governing body.

(B) All proceeds from a local hospitality tax must be kept in a separate fund segregated from the imposing entity's general fund. All interest generated by the local hospitality tax fund must be credited to the local hospitality tax fund.

Section 6-1-730. Use of revenue from local hospitality tax.

(A) The revenue generated by the hospitality tax must be used exclusively for the following purposes:

(1) tourism-related buildings, including, but not limited to, civic centers, coliseums, and aquariums;

(2) cultural, recreational, or historic facilities;

(3) beach access and renourishment;

(4) highways, roads, streets, and bridges providing access to tourist destinations;

(5) advertisements and promotions related to tourism development; or

(6) water and sewer infrastructure to serve tourism-related demand.

(B) In a county in which at least nine hundred thousand dollars in accommodations taxes is collected annually pursuant to Section 12-36-920, the revenues of the hospitality tax authorized in this article may be used for the operation and maintenance of those items provided in (A)(1) through (6) including police, fire protection, emergency medical services, and emergency-preparedness operations directly attendant to those facilities.

Section 6-1-740. Cumulative rate of local hospitality tax.

The cumulative rate of county and municipal hospitality taxes for any portion of the county area may not exceed two percent, unless the cumulative total of such taxes was in excess of two percent or were authorized to be in excess of two percent prior to December 31, 1996, in which case the cumulative rate may not exceed the rate that was imposed or adopted as of December 31, 1996.

Section 6-1-750. Local hospitality tax revenue upon annexation.

In an area of the county where the county has imposed a local hospitality tax that is annexed by a municipality, the municipality must receive only that portion of the revenue generated in excess of the county local hospitality tax revenue for the previous twelve months in the area annexed."

Ordinances prior to March 15, 1997, calculation; revenue; etc.

SECTION 10. Notwithstanding any provision of this act, any ordinance enacted by a county or municipality prior to March 15, 1997, imposing an accommodations fee which does not exceed the three percent maximum cumulative rate prescribed in Section 6-1-540, is calculated upon a base consistent with Section 6-1-510(1), and the revenue from which is used for the purposes enumerated in Section 6-1-530, remains authorized and effective after the effective date of this act and the enacting county or municipality is authorized to issue bonds, pursuant to Article X, Section 14(10) of the Constitution of this State, utilizing the procedures of Section 4-29-68, for the purposes enumerated in Section 6-1-530, and to retire such debt using the proceeds of such an accommodations fee ordinance and the pledge of such other nontax revenues as may be available for those purposes.

Time effective

SECTION 11. Upon approval by the Governor, this act takes effect July 1, 1997, except as otherwise provided.

Approved the 13th day of June, 1997.




Legislative Services Agency
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